Inside Marilyn Munroe

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The Marilyn Monroe towers on Absolute Drive in Mississauga have a fairly small ground floor footprint. The interior lobbies were finished with lots of spit and polish and glitter, all expressed in round shapes. The perimeter elements were granite; the core reflective materials. Note in the above photo the womb chair in the background.


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Like the building above, the lobby was extreme, all furniture being thematically linked to curves.

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Circular lobbies aren’t my forte, and I found myself continually almost bumping into shiny things. Could it be better outside the doors?

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The exterior landscaping continued the circular theme. There was a herd of very large horses outside. They had to be large to be visible in the grand-scaled environment of two major traffic arteries/sewers intersecting. The landscaping of adjacent properties was more in keeping with standards a few years ago, with large surface parking lots. No matter how well Marilyn spread her skirts, and indeed they included huge green-landscaped roof decks, the views necessarily included large roads, intersections, and enormous surface parking lots. I couldn’t help but think the other buildings got the advantage of a better view looking back …

I was surprised to see other pedestrians. Where had they come from, where were they going to? Although landscaped, the walking environment was not user-friendly, the scale was simply alienating. Imagine walking on Tenth Line Road at Hwy 471 in Orleans: it can be done, but would anyone want to?

You can check Absolute Drive out on Google maps or Earth or your favourite geographic provider.

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One thought on “Inside Marilyn Munroe

  1. I don’t know this for sure — it’s been many years since I lived near there — but I’d bet a few cents that a lot of the pedestrians are headed for or from the transit hub at Square One mall on the other side of Hurontario. Or just to Square One itself.

    The environment’s unpleasant to walk in but you’ll have seen the many, many condos and apartments that are still a manageable pedestrian distance from the mall, for both work and shopping.

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